Oneida, New York – The City of Oneida will host a ceremonial groundbreaking on April 22 to commemorate the beginning of construction on a long-term improvement project at its Wastewater Treatment Plant. The ceremony is being held on Earth Day to celebrate the positive impact the project will have on the environment, as it ensures clean water for current and future generations of Oneida residents and businesses. The $48 million project, which is being implemented by Energy Systems Group, LLC (ESG), a subsidiary of CenterPoint Energy, Inc., will fully revitalize the wastewater facility, increase its treatment capacity, and position it as an Organics and Water Resource Recovery Center (OWRRC). In addition to making the facility’s infrastructure more resilient and reliable, the project will also support the growth of local industries in the community by providing a new, dependable location for food and organic waste disposal.
The project’s scope includes improvements to nearly every aspect of the treatment process, creating a fully modernized facility that meets the State’s current regulatory requirements for the next generation. Specifically, the project will include improvements to the plant’s solids processing system and an expansion of the liquid processing system, including three new 70-foot diameter secondary clarifiers. The project will also include a 2.5 mile dedicated pipeline to the wastewater facility and the dairy pretreatment system designed to meet local industry needs. Finally, the project will include new electrical service, including a one-megawatt emergency backup generator, new plant-wide SCADA control system, WiFi, and security.
A major component of the project is the construction of a new anaerobic digester complex, which includes two 600,000 gallon anaerobic digesters and a dedicated receiving facility for high strength organics such as food waste. This new complex and receiving facility will enable the OWRRC to accept trucked-in waste from regional industries and food processors, providing a new source of revenue for the City. This process will also produce biomethane in considerable amounts, which will be utilized as fuel required for digester heating and space heat. Future phases could utilize increased levels of biomethane production for electrical generation for a net zero facility or conversion to Renewable Natural Gas (RNG).
“This project is really a strategic approach to addressing our facility’s needs for meeting permit limits and modernizing aging infrastructure,” said Jeff Rowe, Oneida’s City Engineer. “The project goes beyond simple equipment replacement; it will provide the City a new source of revenue, and give us the capacity to support additional industries that may need a reliable place to dispose of waste,” added Rowe. “The project could be a tool for economic development in this sense.”
The project will also ensure that upgraded plant systems are efficient and that costs are reduced where possible to position the facility to succeed over the long term.
“During the development process, our team looked at all aspects of the facility’s operating budget — chemicals, energy, and maintenance — to see where improvements to practices or infrastructure could be carried out and where they could be most impactful,” said Lawrence Roth, ESG Senior Vice President. “This approach ensures that the City is getting the most value for its project, and it goes hand-in-hand with the idea that this project should be a comprehensive solution.”
More information on the project can be found at www.energysystemsgroup.com/oneida/.
Forward Looking Statement:
This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this news release, the “should,” “will” or other similar words are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions of management which are believed to be reasonable at the time made and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual events and results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Any statements in this news release regarding future events that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Each forward-looking statement contained in this news release speaks only as of the date of this release. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the provided forward-looking information include factors, risks and uncertainties discussed in CenterPoint Energy’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 20202 and other reports CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries may file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.